Yves Oppenheim - Galerie Max Hetzler

Galerie Max Hetzler is pleased to present new paintings by Yves Oppenheimin our Zimmerstrasse gallery space.

In his abstract paintings Yves Oppenheim goes back to the original meaning of painting as a visual language. He creates his complex compositions with means that comply with this in their originality and simplicity. His intention is to use these means to arouse "some sort of clear awareness of the activity that is the production of art"* within the observer.

Colour is not only the central element of painting; it also bears its meaning. A predominant role is played by colour in the works on display. Glowing forms, planes, rods and spots take shape against a mostly monochrome, pink-coloured background; in green, yellow and orange they seem to enter the picture from outside before forming balanced, floating compositions.

Oppenheim analyzes and combines the elements of painting. He plays with the different states of colour, from opaque to transparent, glowing or matt, pouring it rich and deep onto the canvas or leaving it barely visible as a trace of a brush. The forms he creates move in all directions, crossing over the edge of the picture, circling over a particular spot or progressing towards the surface from a background further below. This is about the possibilities of the three-dimensional composition; it is about dynamics and tracing the relations of area and space, of light and dark, of style and gesture. And yet the answers remain vague and unsettled. No support is offered; even the thick brown lines that resemble scaffolding or clamps have no basis. At any given moment something might move, slip off the picture, rise or sink for good. Occasionally previous states may be discerned faintly upon the canvas; the future is left to the observer's imagination.

Yves Oppenheim's paintings are first and foremost sensual works that are to be understood sensually despite their analytical structure. It is the balance of an analytical approach to the elements of painting on the one hand and the assertive use of these elements by the painter on the other that determines the high quality of these works.

In spoken language meaning is not conveyed by a sum of words but by their use within a given environment; in the same way Yves Oppenheim's abstract compositions are suggestive of something real such as landscapes, a book or curtained windows.

This is Yves Oppenheim's second solo exhibition at Galerie Max Hetzler. Born in 1948 in Madagascar, the artist lives and works in Berlin and Paris. Since the 1980's he has participated regularly in solo and group exhibitions. His works can be seen in the collections of the Musée d'art moderne de la ville de Paris, the Centre Pompidou and the Carré d'art, Nîmes.

For further information please contact the gallery at 030 229 24 37 or visit our website www.maxhetzler.com. Opening hours Tue – Sat 11 am – 6 pm.


* quote Yves Oppenheim